“Don’t ask yourself what the world needs; ask yourself what makes you come alive. And then go and do that. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.” ~Harold Whitman
So, you’re considering becoming a certified life coach, but you want to be sure you can get a job in the field before you fully commit to the idea. That’s smart and sensible, and just one reason you might make a great coach.
There’s good news for you: over the past decade, the number of salaried life coach jobs has increased significantly when it comes to major corporations and organizations. In fact, according to the US Department of Labor, coaching jobs are expected to increase by about 14 percent annually through 2018 – and that’s faster than average.
What kinds of job opportunities are available for certified life coaches?
If you want to know the truth, there are limitless opportunities for certified life coaches to get work these days – and you don’t have to live in a cubicle to make a living – although, if a quick search of any jobs board will reveal, there are plenty of corporate opportunities for coaches.
For example, at the time of writing, when I searched “life coach” jobs on UCI’s integrated job board, there were more than 1,000 listings active.
If you’re looking to do something a little more independent, though, there are endless ways you can make a life coaching business fit right into your world. Here are some ways you can make contact with your clients for your coaching sessions.
Live One-on-One Coaching
You can simply set up a coaching practice and see clients by appointment only. If you’ve got the funding, you can get an office or rent a room - but in most cases, you can just set up your coaching appointments in a mutually agreed-upon location. If not, you could talk to your local church or community center, hospital or even your high school, to see if you can borrow or rent a room cheaper for your appointments.
Live Group Coaching
Coaching live groups can be a bit daunting at first, but once you decide how your sessions will run and get into the groove, it’ll be a breeze. You can offer live group coaching on almost any niche (keep reading - I’ve got a few ideas for you at the end of this post). If you’re not already working with an organization on this idea, you can reach out to local niche-related groups. For example, if you were going to set up a weight loss coaching group, you might reach out to local businesses, churches, the community center, gyms - and let them know what you’re doing. Offer a free group session once a month to get people interested.
Online/Virtual Coach - Individuals
You can do live online, one-on-one coaching via Skype or Zoom. You can also do this by phone or via Facebook messenger, or a number of other ways. This would work very much like live, in-person one-on-one coaching. Your client would set up an appointment with you and “meet” at the scheduled time in the agreed-upon virtual “location.”
Online/Virtual Coach - Groups
Depending on the coaching niche you lean toward, you might be able to offer your services to more people at a lower price point (thereby increasing your bottom line without significantly increasing your time investment). If you set up online group coaching options for your clients, you could really take your business to the next level.
Membership Program Coaching
This can be used as a standalone program or as a compliment to one of the above-two mentioned ideas. You can charge a monthly fee and offer a wide variety of benefits to your clients, such as group coaching, free access to your books or products, various giveaways and first-looks, and much more.
You’ll set up an autoresponder to send your clients messages that correspond with their membership date, and then you’ll personally interact with them in pre-determined ways. Essentially, you’ll form an exclusive community of like-minded people who are on the same or a similar path.
Plus, you can add your membership program as a benefit for any in-person clients you see. A membership program can be a little daunting to set up at the beginning, but once it’s done, it’ll save you tons of work - the auto-responders and automation will do a lot of the interacting for you. Then you can host live events such as webinars and calls to let your members get some personal contact.
Customize Your Coaching - Get Niche Specific
So, have you already decided what kind of coach you’re going to be? Have you chosen your niche yet? If you need a little help, here are some ideas to get your brainstorm going.
First, ask yourself what you’re passionate about.
● What’s your story? Have you overcome something that people struggle with? What makes you tick? How can you relate that to coaching?
● What have you accomplished that others might need help with? For example, I lost 100 pounds, and people want to know how I did that - so I offer weight loss coaching.
● What are your talents or the things that you’ve learned to do with ease? Could you help someone save money? Help them set up their estate? Are you good at managing yard sales? There's a niche for almost everything.
● What are you passionate about? Maybe you are a PETA member who wants to help people learn to go vegan. There's a niche for you.
With those things in mind, you need to choose a niche that:
● Allows you to identify a potentially intense perceived need in the mind of your client.
● Gives you a set of problems you can solve for them.
● Is very specific - don’t just say you’re a weight loss coach. Be a weight loss coach for women over 40 who are stay-at-home moms. The more specific the niche, the more “underserved” the niche is and the more successful your business will be.
Here are just a few niche jobs for certified life coaches to consider.
- Weight Loss Accountability Coach
- Fitness Accountability Coach (Exercise)
- Health Coach
- Nutrition Coach
- Diet Coach
Online Business Coach
- Blogger Coach
- Marketing Coach
- Author/Publishing Coach
- Time Management Coach
- Accountability Coach
Career Development Coach
- Career Path Coach
- Executive Coach
- Job-Specific Coach
- Mentor Coach
- Job-Hunting Coach
Family and Relationships Coach
- Couples Coach
- Parenting Coach
- Divorce Coach
- Recovery from Abusive Relationships Coach
- Teen coach
- Family Dynamics Coach
- Family Health and Fitness Coach
- Family Nutrition Coach
- Fashion & Style Coach
- Clutter Coach
- Household Coach
- Stay-at-Home-Mom Coach
- WAHM Coach
- Life Balance Coach
- Self-Esteem Coach
- Personal Development Coach
Don’t be afraid to allow your niche to evolve over time. Maybe you start your business with a slightly broader scope and you narrow it down as you see who your clients are. Follow your passion, but make sure you’re giving your clients what they want, too. That’s how you’ll ultimately become as successful as you can be.
Your Turn: Please Join the Discussion!
Have you chosen your coaching niche yet? What kinds of jobs are you doing now, or hoping to work toward, as a coach? Share your thoughts and experiences with our coaching community in the comments section.